Rohnert Park Police say viral TikTok video of a masked prowler isn't accurate – The Santa Rosa Press Democrat

A viral TikTok video of a masked prowler caught on Rohnert Park residents’ doorbell cameras caused a flood of calls to police who say the video is spreading misinformation.
Initial concern was raised Sept. 19 when two M Section residents reported a masked individual appearing on their doorbell cameras. The person appeared to be dressed as Captain Spaulding, a fictional horror movie character.
The Rohnert Park Department of Public Safety responded by issuing a Nixle message alerting residents to the sightings, increasing patrols in the neighborhood and discussing the issue during a Sept. 20 “Chat with the Chief” livestream.
For more than a month, police have maintained there have been no additional sightings, no leads and the individual had not committed any crimes they are aware of, said Kevin Kilgore, deputy chief of Rohnert Park Department of Public Safety.
For about two weeks, things were relatively quiet and police said they continued to monitor the area.
That was until a TikTok video went viral alleging a man was going to random houses in Rohnert Park, tried to remove someone’s doorbell, broke into a house and was watching someone in their sleep.
Uploaded Sept. 20, the day after the M Section reports to police, the video has amassed 254,500 views and 784 comments as of Monday.
On Oct. 19, the Rohnert Park Police Department issued a Nixle alert in response to the viral video.
“We have been notified that a recent TikTok video is providing the public with misinformation regarding the masked prowler presumably located in Rohnert Park and surrounding areas,” they said. “It is important for the community to know that no criminal activity, leads or additional sightings have been reported in nearly a month. Our Investigations Unit continues to take the cases related to the original sightings very very seriously.”
Someone in Rohnert Park did report an intruder that night, but investigations into both matters led them to the conclusion they were” separate, unrelated incidents,” Kilgore said.
He said as of Monday the separate break-in suspect has not been identified and no further information on that incident would be released at this time.
“Anytime anybody speaks about (the masked individual,) they need to make sure that they have accurate, verified information so that there’s not a perpetuation of misinformation,” Kilgore said. “We would still like to talk to that person, but it doesn’t mean a criminal act occurred.”
An Instagram user with the same name as the TikTok user who uploaded the video told the Press Democrat Oct. 25 that “of course information will be updated as their (police) investigations go forward,” although the user admitted she did get some information wrong in her video.
There were no updates or additional sightings of the masked man as of Monday morning, Rohnert Park officials confirmed.
You can reach Staff Writer Alana Minkler at 707-526-8511 or On Twitter @alana_minkler.
Breaking news & general assignment reporter, The Press Democrat
The world is filled with stories that inspire compassion, wonder, laughs and even tears. As a Press Democrat reporter covering breaking news, tribes and youth, it’s my goal to give others a voice to share these stories.
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